October 30, 2007

I had no idea!

My twins are in the same 5th grade class, and they have a pair of teachers that each teaches half time.  One teacher's mom recently died and DS #1 took it really hard.  He cried, and he didn't even know her mom, but he got emotional just the same.  And then he relayed the story to his other teacher of how his mom almost died!  Excuse me?  I did?  Apparently, he thought I was on my deathbed when I had strep throat back in March (hmm? does this mean I'm a drama queen?).

I had no clue he was so worried!  Of course, when he told his teacher this story, DS #2 said, "No she didn't!"  Can you imagine if he hadn't been there to clear it up?  Their teacher might have been really worried about my poor son and his nearly dead mother!  Kids really do say the darndest things!

October 24, 2007

My favorite part!

Purples Yes, I know I have complained a number of times about quilt chores that I don't like - binding, borders, pieced backings.  You're probably wondering why I even BOTHER to quilt!  But let me assure you, there are parts of it that I love and of course the finished product is always well worth it!

My very favorite part of the entire process is cutting!  I love bonding with each fabric as I cut it into pieces for my quilt.  I know it would be faster if I stacked up fabrics and cut multiple layers, but I prefer to work with each fabric individually so I can enjoy it more.  And you know I like to make scrappy quilts, so this cutting process can be quite involved!

This is the beginning stages of cutting for what I'm planning will be my retreat project in less than 2 weeks!  I'm making the Blackberries and Cream quilt that was in the American Patchwork and Quilting magazine a couple of issues ago (it was June 2007--thanks, Carol!).  The large square in the center will be my 30 block centers.  Each of those blocks is framed by squares and half-square triangles of cream and purple.  Each alternating block is composed of HSTs in cream and purple.  Here I've cut a few of the purples I've pulled from stash and purchased for this quilt.  I have about 60 different purples, but there may be more after I shop at a favorite yet seldom visited shop on Saturday.

I will have probably 30 or 40 cream/white fabrics in the quilt as well.  I collect neutral fabrics to use as scrappy backgrounds in my quilts.  Since I tend to lean towards quilts with HSTs, I always cut a strip of each background fabric I buy, cut them into 3-1/2" squares and throw them in a box.  This I have a ready-made stash of squares for my next scrap quilt.

Another one of my favorite things is taking a stack of fabrics, sometimes something that I have had for YEARS and finally finding just the right pattern to make with them (like Cinnamon Stars!)   I love that lightbulb moment when I finally decide!

Musical family

Kids2_2 My boys are now in 5th grade and had the opportunity to play an instrument this year.  DS #1 picked the viola (just like his Mom!) and DS #2 chose the clarinet.  They started music classes at school just about 4 weeks ago and I've heard them practice, but last Sunday they gave us a little concert.  DS #1 played Mary Had a Little Lamb on the viola.  It sounded very nice.  Then DS #2 played Jingle Bells, then went on to play Sleigh Ride and then a little ditty that he composed.   I was stunned by how good he was!

This is the boy that wanted to quit after only a week because it was too hard.  He finally figured out how to play actual notes and it finally clicked for him.  Last night he came into the kitchen while I was preparing dinner and played the National Anthem for me twice - with no music in front of him!   Then he went in and asked his brother "Can you play the National Anthem?"  (To which DS #1 responded - "But we're only supposed to go to page 10!")  lol

I asked Squidward if all the clarinets were playing such advanced songs or if he was going on ahead in his lessons and he said he was going ahead.  I was truly blown away.   He's a natural.   My sons - the musicians!  (Oh and DS #1 is also in the choir and sings like an angel...)

October 21, 2007

Weekend challenge

I worked with my sister-in-law Jan at the quilt shop on Thursday and mentioned to her that I hoped to get 2 quilt backs ready this weekend to mail to our Idaho longarm quilter.  She said she had a quilt she wanted to send and asked if she could include it in the box with mine, so that gave us both a deadline.

I'd planned the entire weekend to work on them, but ended up not getting into my sewing room at all on Saturday.   I woke up Sunday morning to get an early start and immediately ran into a snag.   I discovered the leftover pieces of Chez Moi I was planning to connect for my Granny Squares quilt back were not going to be large enough - not by a long shot.  So what's a girl to do?  I hopped online and searched for an extra wide quilt back that would coordinate.  Good luck.  I ended up with something resembling Aunt Grace that looked vaguely like it would work with a granny square theme and hope it arrives quickly.

Friend Next up was piecing the back of the Cinnamon Stars sampler.  I had two blocks that didn't make the cut for the front of the quilt, but weren't quite pretty enough for pillows and thought it would be fun to use on the back and pieced in the center is the label I made.  I decided to name this quilt Imaginary Friend, as the project was inspired by and I was spurred on to finish it by my no-longer-imaginary friend, Nicole.   Here's a little peek at the back.

Cupcake I also had time to finish the 9-patches for my Drumbeat/Cupcake quilt from our Carrie Nelson class at the Buggy Barn this August, which Nicole is also working on in a different color combo.  I'm sticking with the blue/caramel combination from the kit for my hourglass blocks.  I'm a blue girl, what can I say?   I have 118 9-patches completed and all the cutting for the hourglass and border pieces is also finished.  Now some serious chain piecing will commence.  Here is the incredible mess on my sewing table.

I also worked on the hand-stitching binding of my orange version of Zuzu's Petals (Nicole suggested the name Kowabunga because of the wild surfboard fabric on the border and - DUDE! - it's perfect!).  I have just one side left and I hope to be able to finish one other quilt's binding before our guild retreat November 7-11.   Oh, did I mention - WE GOT IN!  I just got the email yesterday and I'm so excited!   Space is limited and the retreats are hugely popular, so we're always on pins and needles after we send our registrations until we get the official word.  Now to figure out a project and get the preparation work done - there's not much time!

I've also started a THIRD part-time job (yes, my sanity is in question at this point) and the scope of it seems much bigger than what I originally agreed to, so my sewing time is going to be severely limited until the end of this year at least.  I'll just have to make time because sewing is what makes me truly happy.

October 19, 2007

Up in the barn!

Barn I know - this looks just like the LAST photo I posted, but I brought the Falling Leaves (Allspice Tapestry Moda U) quilt into the shop yesterday and everyone was so excited about it, they hung it up on the wall immediately.  I think it looks awesome against the red wall of the barn.  It's going to be fun to see it hanging there across from the cutting counter every time I go to work.  I'm either going to be really sick of seeing it, or really excited to finally take it home and get it quilted!  I suspect the latter, as I love the quilt even more now that I can see it from a distance!

October 14, 2007

Fall All Around

ModauFalling Leaves.  I finished the Moda U kit I was working on for the shop with the Allspice Tapestry fabrics.  I have mixed feelings about this one.  I loved the fabrics before I started, but I saw too many of the prints repeated and it was hard to randomize the blocks while laying it all out.  After I started sewing rows, I started to like it a little better.  And I had zero trouble getting the borders sewn on - that part was a breeze.  This is not a very good picture - maybe I can get a better one of it hanging in the shop.

Decor1Fall Decorating.  Just a little behind this year, I pulled out the Halloween decorations yesterday, or "Spookytown" as my kids call it.  They know just where everything was last year - Heaven forbid I want to switch things around!  Here are my 2 main 'scenes' and the last photo shows the great new addition this year - Witchy Poo Annie from Raggedy Old Annies - what a great doll - isn't she adorable?

Decor2Falling BehindNicole challenged me to finish binding one quilt by Sunday.  I thought I could handle the challenge with ease, but I only got about half the binding on my orange quilt.  Well, at least I am making progress.  I did get a lot of piecing done for my 9-patch project, and some sewing room organizing was accomplished as well.  With too many projects, it's really hard for me to stay focused....


October 9, 2007


Sorry for the boring blog of late - I haven't had a heck of a lot of time to sew, so really there is nothing new to share with you all.  I am halfway through the Allspice Tapestry Moda U quilt I am making for the shop and my goal is to have it completely together by this weekend.  I am also working on getting binding on FIVE quilts that have been waiting for the cooler weather.

I hope to have something quilty to share with you soon, so please stop by again.

October 2, 2007

Look at that beautiful face!

Img_000200 I show a lot of pictures of my DD because she is such a ham, but not so many of my boys.  Here's one I can't resist sharing.  This is DS #1 after a hard day at Walt Disney World.  Doesn't he look like an angel?  When I showed him this picture, he said "Aw, why did you take a picture of me when I was sleeping?"  And I told him "Because that's when I love you the most!"  lol    He knows I'm kidding.  I think I have the best kids in the world (doesn't every mother?).   My head is swelled from all our relatives and strangers we met at WDW telling me how well behaved my children are.  I feel like their dad and I have done a good job with them - so far at least!

October 1, 2007

Sampler flimsy!

FlimsyGetting the borders on was quite the struggle and I may have taken a few shortcuts ( my longarm quilter will probably be tearing her hair out with this one) but - it's done, I love it and now on to the next project!